A Gold Star father whose emotional speech at the Democratic convention sparked a public fight with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump re-entered the campaign on Friday, questioning whether his war-hero son would be discriminated against in a Trump administration.
"[My son] was a Muslim American. I want to ask Mr. Trump, 'Would my son have a place in your America?'" a tearful Khizr Khan asks in a new ad released by the campaign of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
Capt. Humayun Khan, who was killed in Iraq in 2004 while protecting his fellow soldiers, has become an often-cited figure on the Democratic campaign trail since Trump suggested barring all Muslim immigrants from entering America earlier this year.
Humayun Khan came to America when he was 2, and enlisted in the Army after college. He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star for his actions to shield American and Iraqi troops from a car bomb near Baquabah.
At the Democratic convention, Khizr Khan told a national audience that "if it was up to Donald Trump, he never would have been in America" and blasted the Republican nominee by noting "you have sacrificed nothing and no one."
In the following weeks, Trump praised Humayun Khan's service but questioned his parents' motivations and loyalties. The fight drew heavy criticism of Trump, who previously had to defend comments he made that mocked Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain for being captured during the Vietnam War.
In a statement, officials from Clinton’s campaign said the new ad is designed to remind voters that "not only has Trump repeatedly attacked Muslim Americans in this campaign, he has also insulted our men and women in uniform."
Trump has pushed back on those accusations. At the second presidential debate, Trump called the fallen soldier "an American hero" but added "if I were president at that time, he would be alive today, because unlike (Clinton), who voted for the war without knowing what she was doing, I would not have had our people in Iraq."
The new ad will air in the swing states of Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania in coming days. Follow @LeoShane
Leo Shane III covers Congress, Veterans Affairs and the White House for Military Times. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Leo covers Congress, Veterans Affairs and the White House for Military Times. He has covered Washington, D.C. since 2004, focusing on military personnel and veterans policies. His work has earned numerous honors, including a 2009 Polk award, a 2010 National Headliner Award, the IAVA Leadership in Journalism award and the VFW News Media award.